What’s a duck to do on a blog? Quack? This is my first experience with blogging, so hopefully it is something as interesting to read as it will be for me to express. My name is Rob Ranalli, and I’m a busy-body. I am a philosophy and history major who is also working towards his masters of arts in technology, policy and ethics; and that’s just the beginning! I’m a part of Redshift, the literary magazine; the Law Society; the wrestling team; and my girlfriend is in a sorority, so I guess that makes me part of Greek life, too?
I am a junior from Jersey City (New Jersey…) and I find the humanities to be equally fascinating and challenging. This semester I am taking my first graduate courses (2), and next I will be upping that as my undergraduate requirements are, as I am sad to admit, dwindling. I came to Stevens as a business and technology major, but soon found myself more enveloped and stimulated in my philosophy classes, so I switched!
Life so far as a CAL (College of Arts and Letters) student is worthwhile. I have immense flexibility with my schedule, I have professors that I can bug almost any time I want (and they are helpful!), and I get to engage very intelligent and creative people almost every day (what can be said about Mondays…). I intend to attend law school after I graduate, and am looking forward to either practicing or going into public service. I knew CAL was right for me when talking to professors about switching to philosophy, and instead of trying to get me out of the door, they asked me why I wanted to switch, and wanted to converse with me and learn more about me and what interested me in philosophy more than business. It was the feeling that I could depend on these people for support, as well as students who were minors or majors, if I ever had trouble. I’m not saying this isn’t the same as in other departments, but when you’re one philosophy major in a pool of three (or was it two?) you tend to stand out and be recognized – which is funny, because every person I talked too from that point on didn’t even believe that was a major offered here!
Well, I can say it is, and I can say I have no regrets about it. I’m actually sad that I have one philosophy class left for my major. College is more than parties and extra-curriculars, it is what it ought to be and is often forgotten to be: about the material and the people. I’m a nerd, albeit, a personable and social nerd, but nonetheless I find ancient books written by ancient authors more exciting than a frat party (no offense, some people need dancing lessons). That is not to say that I don’t get out – I have a nice tan for Irish skin (that Italian in me is all stoicism and ideology, I suppose) – but I do enjoy understanding a difficult philosophic perspective just as much as I do when I’m emperor of a world conquering nation in Civilization: V (that’s a video game)!
As it stands (I’m actually sitting), I’m in the library, in Sam’s Place, working on homework with my girlfriend now (captain of the girl’s softball team, holds a bunch of records, proud of her…) so I should probably stop writing about me, and start writing my assessment for class.